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Cinelli Quaderni: Gravel Bikes 2023

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Meet Marco, 37 years old, graphic designer, founder – with childhood friends Fausto Giliberti and Guido Daminelli  – of Studio Temp, the cult design agency nestled in the hills of Bergamo most famous for its extraordinary creative collaboration with Virgil Abloh, who between 2014 and his untimely passing in 2021 entrusted the studio with perhaps his most important, visually radical graphic projects.


Marco started cycling late, in 2017.

But quickly entered deep into the smallest manias and passions the sport offers, from the obsessive fine-tuning of equipment and position, to the ins-and-outs of racing (in particular cyclocross), to organizing local group rides for the Milan creative scene, to articulating his aesthetic vision through his micro cycling clothing project and team Velo Temp, kit of choice for subversive Milanese performance cycling fiends…

We met up with Marco outside his flat on a typically cold and humid Milanese December morning long before the sun would rise to ride along on his favourite local gravel heavy route.

“This is the ride I usually do in the summer to ride up to the studio in Bergamo or back as a kind of hardcore commuter training ride.”
He told us, over a first coffee.

“It’s not the fastest way up to Bergamo but I like riding it because it follows more or less the same course as the character Renzo in Alessandro Manzoni’s legendary 1827 novel, when he escapes from Milan after being accused of being an agitator, and makes his way up to Bergamo. So I’m very attached to this ride… also because of sites you pass on it. For example the hydraulic wheel designed by Leonardo Da Vinci at Groppello or the “canyon” that inspired Leonardo’s The Virgin of the Rocks painting… In summer when the days are longer I even stop and swim in the canal and it’s the perfect ride home from the studio.”

In Cassano d’Adda, 25km out of Milan, the sky a bleak and steaming pink hue, we meet up with Marco’s racing buddy and dynamite legs Alessio. Another quick coffee and from there long the canal up to Trezzo mixing dirt roads with cycling paths and some single trail, taking in the extraordinary sights as the mist begins to lift and the tries to force its way through… and from there to Bergamo and to the office…


“When I start a new graphic project,” Marco says, explaining the relationship between cycling and his creative process, “I begin with an image in my head; a cartoon I watched as a child, an image in a book bought some time ago.
From there I try to amplify my feelings through research and tests.
I continue to reflect while riding, in fact I started riding my bike because I needed time alone to think, to get away from the pollution of the city and to be in nature.”

“Above all,” he concludes “I like working with limits, limits of technology or medium, circling around them, making so that the limit itself generates the beauty of the final result.”



Marco rides the 2023 Cinelli Nemo Gravel Copper
Alessio rides the 2023 Cinelli Zydeco King Gumbo



Cinelli Quaderni is an editorial format dedicated to exploring some of the world’s most interesting riding spots, be they urban, rural, Alpine or otherwise, together with cyclists whose way of riding intertwines the landscape with a mosaic of other cultural attitudes. The way these riders express themselves when cycling reflects many of the design objectives of Cinelli products.



Stay tuned for more stories of riders and places whose attitude mirror Cinelli design objectives by subscribing to our newsletter.

True Stories: Marco Panzerini’s favourite cinelli graphics

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Marco Panzerini is Cinelli’s art director.
He has been designing graphics for Cinelli bicycles since shortly after arriving the company in 2012.

His favourite graphic he ever designed for Cinelli is – obviously – the new Cinelli Pressure team edition.


“Because the thing I like the most is work with graphic or painting processes and this artwork is all about process. And even better is a process that has never been used before in cycling. I got the idea from another sport that is very close to my heart: windsurfing. In windsurfing certain brands will paint their freestyle boards only with primer to keep things light and then lightly sand it to allude to the artisanal process of hand-shaping the board, which is not visible in the final product. What I’m so excited and happy about is that I took this process, which is something almost “secondary” in another product and transformed into the center of attention, and did it before anyone else!”


Caught up in Marco’s enthusiasm, we decided to ask him what are his three other favourite graphics that HE designed for Cinelli and his three favourites NOT designed by him.
His choices are surprising, fascinating, and a whirlwind tour through our more recent history!


Marco’s top 3 Cinelli graphics designed by HIM




Cinelli Vigorelli RHC edition

“At first this was meant to be a one-off bike for our team leader at the Red Hook Criterium that year, Davide Vigano, but then we got so many comments that we made a small production run. Again, like with the Pressure what I love here is the great process! The glitter flakes were bought in America from Roth Metal Flake, the brand created by hot rod legend Big Daddy Ed Roth. The flakes are so chunky that it took 8 layers of clear coat to get a smooth finish. Then after that, applying the graphics was easy: I just went for a super team, super bold effect more like motoGP bike than a bicycle.”



Cinelli Vigorelli 2015

“Here the idea was all based around an asymmetric graphic placement. The Vigorelli and Cinelli logos and painting masks were asymmetrically placed across top and down tubes creating a strange rhythm and visual surprises. Also: I thought the brand would never approve it because it was probably the first time ever, or at least in many years, that there was no Cinelli logo on the downtube (non-drive side…).”



Cinelli Zydeco 2018

“I designed the graphics for the first raw aluminium Zydeco frame in 2015/16. It was my favourite graphic and of course I bought one. Then in 2018 I made this graphic (and sold my 2016 Zydeco and bought this one to replace it!). It’s my favourite of the raw Aluminium Zydeco graphics that we did for many years just for the way the graphics blend into the aluminium. It was the first time I used the colours from our “Caleido” graphic concept – which we used on a lot of bikes in those years – OUTSIDE of the Cinelli logo. In general these raw aluminium frames caused loads of production problems but customers loved them!”


Marco’s Top 3 Cinelli graphics NOT designed by him



Cinelli Mash Histogram

“There are so many Cinelli-Mash graphics that I love but this for me is the revolutionary one and the one which became the basis of many of the graphics we later made with them. And again it’s a graphic/process from another world (in this case photography), recontextualized on a bike. Also fun fact: I bought this bike with my very first ever Cinelli paycheck!”



Cinelli Passatore

“Apart from really liking these graphics, in particular the head tube badge – which we have incorporated into some special 75th anniversary items this year which I can’t wait to share – what I think is so cool about this bike is the historical reference to the Italian brigand, the Passatore, who was an extremely violent and borderline figure in national folklore… Risky, fun stuff and a really great bike in general.”



Cinelli Strato Caleido

“I think it was the first bike that Cinelli used the Caleido concept, which I really like and inspired some of my own graphics for the brand. The Caleido concept is derived from the effect created when colours are mis-aligned in the four-colour process, revealing cyan, magenta, yellow and black. I don’t know the full story behind how this graphic was borne but I can’t help but suspect that it was inspired by the seminal work of the Milanese graphic design legend Giancarlo Iliprandi, colleague of Italo Lupi, who designed our winged-C logo in 1979…”



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Cinelli Quaderni: Road Bikes 2023

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Meet Vito, 34 years old, professional skipper living in Genova, ex-fixed gear obsessive and “star” of the very first Cinelli Quaderno, dedicated to our 2023 road bikes.


Vito, 34 years old, is a professional skipper.

Born and raised in the nearby seaside town of Rapallo, he lives and rides (when he’s on land) in Genova.

In certain cycling circles he is famous for creating Italy’s most prestigious fixed gear race, Respvblica. Held between 2016 – 2019 (and perhaps returning this year), Respvublica is a fixed gear only race in around the labyrinth that is the city of Genova.
Designed to mix velocity with climbs with traffic jams it was a race with what in wine-making they call terroir, an entirely unique perfume or flavour that reflected the extraordinary geography and culture of Genova and its surrounding landscape.

We met up with him near his house very early on a crisp early December morning to document a ride in and around his favourite Genova riding spots together with his friend and mentor, Daniele.

For Vito, as he explained to us that morning in his own words as we set up the bikes, “for five years, between 2011 and 2016 me and friends rode only track bikes with no brakes. We were fundamentalists of fixed gear cycling. For us no other bike existed.

People who rode bikes with brakes were… [LAUGHTER]. Better not to say what we thought!”“But,” he continues “little by little I realized that what I liked about cycling was SPEED.

I liked being the fastest thing in the city. Realizing this was a turning point… I acquired a road bike, I began frequenting roadies amongst whom Daniele…”Daniele, who is an extremely graceful highly rated local rider with victories last season in important hill climbs, is also a student of the sport and its equipment.

As Vito explains to us “Daniele is somebody with whom I share a lot of obsessions. And it was him that taught me about road cycling, who gave me advice on how to nurture my ability,my ‘fibers’ as they say in Italian cycling slang.

Daniele found a way to spur me on, but to do without machismo. With him there’s never competition, or if there is competition it is the kind that feels healthy. Because in road cycling there tends to be an obsession I did this in this specific time with these watts etc. etc. Daniele never made a big deal of being faster than me at climbing or anything else… so I’ve learned a lot from him.”

At a café stop in the picturesque suburb of Pegli, before climbing the mythical (at least for Genovese riders) Monte Faiallo, Vito further elucidates: “Road cycling and road bikes have changed me. They’ve allowed me to overcome a lot of limits, above all mental but also physical.
It’s like a mantra or a therapy. More than the results I might achieve, what I love is the process.”

After climbing to the highest point of the lunar-esque landscapes of the Faiallo, where it is possible to ride through snow whilst staring down at the Mediterranean, we descend again, stop for focaccia before racing back across the length of sprawling, chaotic Genova to Quarto from which we ride up through the last rural houses and into winding slopes of olive trees and Mediterranean scrubland, before the landscapes opens up onto the extraordinary vision of the sun setting across the sea, France and the entire Italian Riviera’s coastlines visible as a thick black line on the horizon.
Monte Fasce offers the quintessential Ligurian aesthetic experience in 8 very brief and intense kilometres of climbing only twenty minutes from the city center.

We stop to switch on our lights then swoop back down into the city, skitching rides here and there through traffic back to the center…


Vito rides the 2023 Cinelli Pressure Triple White
Daniele rides the 2023 Cinelli XCR Disc Mirror



Cinelli Quaderni is an editorial format dedicated to exploring some of the world’s most interesting riding spots, be they urban, rural, Alpine or otherwise, together with cyclists whose way of riding intertwines the landscape with a mosaic of other cultural attitudes. The way these riders express themselves when cycling reflects many of the design objectives of Cinelli products.



Stay tuned for more stories of riders and places whose attitude mirror Cinelli design objectives by subscribing to our newsletter.